Gerd Blum: Medieval Models for the Maniera Moderna: Christian Historiography and the Torrentiniana


The 'Torrentiniana' opens with the creation of the world, and of humankind, by the 'deus artifex' of the Hebrew Bible. The text of the first edition closes shortly after the description of the 'Last Judgement' by Michelangelo, who is stylized as 'artista divino'. On the one hand, the historiographical concept of the 'Vite' is aligned with the 'new', humanist tradition of writing history and its pagan models. On the other hand, the 'Vite' resort to a patristic theology of history and to medieval Universal Chronicles 'ab orbe condito'. The 'Vite' not only inherit single motives from the Bible, as Paul Barolsky has assumed, but they also carry over its historiographical basic structure in total, and they do this in the way that World Chronicles, the 'Legenda aurea', and 'uomini-famosi'-cycles had interpreted the biblical structure of traditional Christian theology of history.

Especially the sub-division of the "progresso della rinascita" (T 125) into three epochs offer explicit analogies to the three patristic Ages of salvation: 'ante legem'—'sub lege'—'sub gratia' (nature, law, grace).

Gerd Blum ist seit 2001 Professor für Kunstgeschichte an der Kunstakademie Münster.

Nach dem Studium in München, Bochum, Berlin und an der Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa promovierte er in Basel über den 'Deutsch-Römer' Hans von Marées. Habilitation mit einer Arbeit über "Idealer Ort und inszenierter Ausblick. Architektur und Landschaft in der italienischen Renaissance", ebenfalls in Basel. Kürzlich veröffentlichte er Aufsätze sowie eine Biographie über Giorgio Vasari ("Giorgio Vasari, Der Erfinder der Renaissance", München: C.H.Beck 2011). Ein weiterer Arbeitsschwerpunkt ist die zeitgenössische Kunst. Blum war Gastprofessor an der Universität Heidelberg und im akademischen Jahr 2010/2011 Fellow am Institute for Advanced Study der Universität Konstanz. 2010 erhielt er den Wissenschaftspreis der Aby-Warburg-Stiftung Hamburg.

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